Andy Nye

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Andy Nye onstage in 1994.
Andy Nye onstage in 1994.

Andy Dane Nye (born 8 April 1959, in London, England) is an English musician, songwriter and record producer, as well as being a member of the rock band The Michael Schenker Group at their peak in the 1980s. During a long and productive career he has played keyboards for Sheena Easton, Barbara Dickson, Toyah Willcox, Chris Farlowe, Gerard Kenny, Dennis Waterman, Princess Stephanie of Monaco, Jahn Teigen, The Kick, After Hours and Mainland. His songs have been recorded by artists such as Roger Daltrey, Asia, The Michael Schenker Group, Ten Years After, Chris Farlowe, John Entwistle, Colin Blunstone and The Zombies.

Biography[edit]

Andy Nye was trained in classical piano from the age of eight, attending the Watford School of Music as a teenager and performing his first paid gig at the age of 14, playing the clarinet and alto saxophone in his grandfather's danceband.

On leaving school in 1977, he joined Mainland, a band managed by Deep Purple's former co-manager Rob Cooksey, leading to his first studio experience under the auspices of Deep Purple producer Martin Birch. After a successful but gruelling 81 date tour with Leo Sayer in 1979, culminating in 5 nights at The Hammersmith Odeon, the band disintegrated[1] and Nye was requisitioned to play keyboards with rising star Sheena Easton on her 1980 debut world tour, accompanying her live in the U.S. on the legendary Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson on three separate occasions.

In 1981, Nye switched to touring with UK songstress Barbara Dickson, recording the live Here We Go album in the process.[2]

In 1982, he was approached by Rob Cooksey and asked to perform on a session basis with the Michael Schenker Group (MSG) whom Cooksey was managing at that time. He was quickly inducted as a permanent member after they headlined the Reading Festival in the summer of that year. In 1984, whilst headlining the Rock in Japan series of festivals, which boasted Whitesnake, The Scorpions and Bon Jovi on the same bill, Nye was approached by David Coverdale and asked to jump ship and perform with Whitesnake, after the departure of keyboardist Jon Lord. But he refused when discovering he'd be required to perform offstage. After a period of volatility within MSG, Schenker eventually disbanded the group later that year.

Nye, who had previously signed a publishing deal with The Who's management company, Trinifold, joined forces with the Who's bass guitarist John Entwistle on a project called The Rock, with Barriemore Barlow (Jethro Tull) on drums, later to be replaced by Zak Starkey (the Who, Oasis).

In 1986, Nye began writing and recording with Leo Lyons (Ten Years After) as The Kick, resulting in the release of the album Heartland.[3]

At the same time, he had started a successful writing partnership with John Payne, working on songs for the upcoming ELO Part II project, Payne having been chosen to replace Jeff Lynne as vocalist. But Payne departed the project before recording began and he and Nye went on to form the Passion as a vehicle for their songs, enlisting the services of drummer Clive Burr (Iron Maiden), bass guitarist Mel Gabbitas and ex-Mike Oldfield guitarist Ant Glynne. Payne was asked to join Asia in 1991, whilst Nye had been writing and producing material for the Zombies' Colin Blunstone, a move which resulted in many of the duo's songs being subsequently recorded by Asia on various albums.

Nye wrote, performed and recorded with young emerging talent After Hours before returning to his original position of hired hand and touring the world with Toyah Willcox, Princess Stephanie of Monaco and various other artists.

In 1995, he set up his own international music agency, becoming Wishbone Ash's UK agent in 2000,[4] a position he holds to the present.[5] In 1997, he formed PLATINUM, a fully live ABBA tribute show, which has subsequently gone on to tour around the globe to critical acclaim and establish itself as one of the top tribute acts in the world,[6] with Nye performing the role of Benny Andersson.

In 2009, Voiceprint released an album of the remaining Nye/Payne material entitled The Passion.

In 2015, Nye's contribution as an agent to keeping Wishbone Ash a viable performing entity after more than forty years was acknowledged by founding member Andy Powell in his autobiography Eyes Wide Open.

Discography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "With Britain still gripped in the depths of the Second World War, Les Payne appeared for the very first time, in Newport on the Isle of Wight". Lespayne.com. Retrieved 2014-07-23. 
  2. ^ "Discography". Barbara Dickson. 1982-10-14. Retrieved 2014-07-23. 
  3. ^ [1] Archived 21 August 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ Carter & Chatterton (2001). Blowin' Free - Thirty Years of Wishbone Ash, p. 191. Firefly Publishing, London. ISBN 0-946719-33-0.
  5. ^ "Wishbone Ash". Wishbone Ash. Retrieved 2014-07-23. 
  6. ^ "ABBA TRIBUTE BAND - Platinum ABBA - UK Based Premier International ABBA Tribute Act". Platinum ABBA. Retrieved 2014-07-23. 

External links[edit]